Tag Archives: Action Figure

Voltron 84 figures- Playmates (NetFlix)

Back in 1984 the Japanese super robots came to the United States. Beast King GoLion was adapted into Voltron: Defender of the Universe. It lasted for 2 seasons and 72 episodes. The US was enamored with robot lions that combined to make a giant robot to protect the universe. There were other iterations of the show, and other attempts to breath life into the series once again. Then in 2016 NetFlix teamed up with Dreamworks to bring us Voltron: Legendary Defender. This was an update of the original show with the same base characters and an updated, but recognizable version of Voltron. NetFlix teamed up with Playmates to bring us an awesome collection of lions that could combine in conjunction with some really good articulation for the lions as well as for the fully formed Voltron. We even got lights and sounds.

Legendary Defender

Flash ahead to the end of 2017, and the fans love the show. NetFlix and Playmates surprised us with a second round of lions. This time around the line is called Voltron ’84. Netflix brought back 12 episodes of the original show with the current cast talking about an episode that are memorable and important to them and the creation of the new show. It is fun to look back at the old episodes and see the hand drawn work of 1981 (remember it was released in Japan years before it came to the US).

 

 

Red Lion:

The red lion comes with Voltron’s sword. He also comes with a jaw blade, a laser cannon, and a missile launcher. As you will see, the four smaller lions come with a jaw blade, a secondary weapon, and then a bigger spring-loaded firing weapon.

It is fun to look at the two side by side. Since they come with Voltron’s sword, it is an interesting look at the past and modern times. The original sword was so flashy and ornate with so many extra shapes thrown on. The modern one looks more sleek as a chopping energy sword.

The 84 version is a lot more boxy, and has a stiffer overall appearance. They actually have similar points of articulation, but the modern lion has a lot more range than the 84 version.

I really enjoyed looking at the two side by side and seeing how changes were made to make them sleeker and rounder, but keep the overall feel.

One of the most striking differences is in the face of the modern lion compared to the 84 lion. The 84 lions all have such wide faces and giant ears. Well, Red and Green lions anyway. The others have different designs around the sides of the heads to simulate ears with a robot twist.

And of course, they form body parts. The first thing you will notice right away is how well the legs are hidden in the modern arms as opposed to the 84 lions that have them folded up on the outside of the body. Simplicity of visual design versus simplicity of transformation.

 

Yellow Lion:

The Yellow Lion is my favorite of the 5 in Legendary Defender. When I was growing up, I only had one Lion. Yup, the Yellow Lion. I am sure that has something to do with it, but I love the overall bulk of the lion. It is more robust than the others, and tends to use it’s mass as a weapon. The 84 Yellow Lion is pretty neat too. It has fins on it’s back like a fighter jet, and it is the only lion to have a weapon directly on it’s body.

Side by side, the Legendary Yellow Lion is a lot more robust than the 84 Yellow Lion. The extra weapon was turned into an extra shield for the Legendary Lion.

The colors on the lions are so important. Of course there is a main color on all of the lions. The Legendary Lions have the addition of black to help break up the solid color. When you look at the Yellow lion, it had a lot of red mixed in. The Legendary Lion has a touch of red, but not too much.

Transformation of the two are very similar. Both use their forelegs to help support Voltron in the back. Their hind legs fold up, with Legendary Lion’s legs folding behind engines. Legendary’s tail slides in the body, while 84’s tail folds down the back. And the shield again to help protect the head and the Paladin when Voltron needs to kick something.

 

Blue Lion:

Blue comes in with a mouth full of blade, a beam emitter on one joint, and a missile launcher on the other. There is a line of yellow that runs down the back of the lion and all the way to the tip of the tail. For the Legendary line, they stayed consistent with the tails. All are silver with a blue tip for one of their weapons.

As a juxtaposition, in the design of the Legendary Lion, they omitted all of the yellow, save for the eyes. They put the yellow on Legendary Green’s butt.

They did leave a bit of the red on the Legendary Lion, though they moved it up. In an effort to help equal out with the bulky Yellow Lion, Blue Lion’s red area is a shield for it’s head.

And when they are transformed, they look very similar. I don’t think there is a lot they could have done with the legs to change the overall look. The front legs come in really handy when posing Voltron (either version).

 

Green Lion:

Green Lion is the other arm of Voltron. Red Lion came with a sword, Green Lion comes with a shield. And all of the other stuff.

Where the Legendary Green Lion wears the shield all of the time, the 84 Green Lion cannot carry that shield. This time around the two are much closer in color. The 84 version only had one rectangle of green, and that was omitted, since you can’t see that part anyway.

 

And in case anyone was wondering, yes, the Legendary Lions can borrow the 84 Lion’s Jaw Blades. They do not tab into place like they do with the 84 Lions, but they have spring loaded jaws, so I don’t think they needed to peg into the 84 versions either.

Once again, the arms of the Legendary Voltron are a lot cleaner. Hiding pieces. I am sure it took a LOT of design work to pull it off, but boy does it look nice.

 

Black Lion:

And then there is the Black Lion. The leader of the team, and the most super boxiest looking lion of all. This Lion’s articulation is less than the other lions, but that is to be expected from this guy. He comes with lights and sounds. Over 60 phrases. Like with the Legendary Lion, this one is the only one that can keep it’s mouth open. And the face of Voltron hides nicely on the roof of the mouth.

Comparing the two face to face, the first glaring difference is in the wings. Legendary Voltron’s wings are HUGE! 84’s wings are flat and folded into place. One interesting thing is the comparison of the back legs. There are minor changes, but the main design is the same. There is a REALLY important reason for that.

And the transformation beings. The Black Lions form the torso and head of Voltron. They went for a more simplistic look for the Legendary Voltron’s torso. Gone is the giant crest and gold star belt buckle.

 

Transformed into Voltron:

These are tall figures. Lights and sounds in the chest. Articulation for days. You cannot go wrong with these robots. Side by side they look great. There are some design cues I love about the Legendary Voltron, like the silver collar around the head. It gives the look of more power.

When it is time to go, it is time to open the wings. Um, a little embarrassing for 84. His wings are pretty small. Not bad, just different.

The posability of these two is remarkable. They are virtually identical. There are some subtle differences between the two with the bulks of the lions.

From the side you can see how important the front legs of the Yellow and Blue Lions are for support. You can move those legs all over the place to get the right pose. The 84 Voltron actually has a bit of a better stance than Legendary. The Legendary Voltron is a bit back heavy. See, bigger is not always better. But in space, who cares?

 

Voltrons combined:

The burning question I was thinking when I saw these were coming out was: “Can you switch out the lions on either team?” Why yes you can. That was the importance of the back legs of the two Black Lions being nearly identical. They are needed to hold the pieces in place.

As I was finishing up, and playing around with switching lions, I noticed that I had mistransformed Voltron 84. I had the shoulders rotated so the red buttons were facing up. They should have been turned so the red line goes across the entire chest of Voltron. Oops. Fixed and ready for action.

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Autobot Squeeks – Transformers: The Last Knight (Deluxe Class)

Squeeks is a little robot that showed up here and there during Transformers: The Last Knight. He was a character mostly in the first part of the movie. Once things got crazy, he went to the wayside so the big bots could battle it out. I had expected to see more of him in the film, maybe in a roll similar to Fixit from Robots in Disguise.

Well, Squeeks comes in his robot mode with a trailer, an arm, and a giant gun.

The trailer opens up into a repair station not unlike Optimus Prime’s trailer. It has a weapons system in the back, a repair arm, and a red tool box for holding parts. In this case, the arm, and his handlebars in vehicle mode.

He can sit on the repair stand in robot mode to get fixed up.

When one of the handlebars is removed, the arm can take it’s place and give Squeeks an actual usable hand.

He can change out that arm for a cannon as well. This this is crazy. It also had a handle so someone else could also use the gun.

The trailer can fold up once more and become a backpack, though it does make Squeeks back heavy, so his front wheels are off the ground. The weapon system is deployed in this mode over Squeeks head.

Transforming Squeeks is quite involved. It is pretty amazing the engineering that went into making a fat round guy into a long scooter. But it works, and he looks great. The rust and dirt is brushed on from the factory, and does not look all that good.

The trailer can attach to a flip-up hitch. There are little wheels on the bottom of the trailer so it can roll. The hitch was hard to get connected the first few times, but got a bit easier. The parts hold together very well.

The only thing missing is a place to store the big gun. It is not very “disguise” like if a scooter is driving around with a super cannon on the trailer.

And if the scooter mode needs a bit of fixing up, it can fit well on the trailer as well.

I have been waiting for this guy since I first saw him online. I knew he would be a unique figure with some pretty neat transformations if he was to change his look that much. I had expected him to be slightly bigger. I was thinking he would be a similar size to the motorcycles that have come out in the Generations line. It was going to be my main vehicle for my 6 inch Deadpool.

But alas, it is ever so small. Great for comedy relief, but out-scaled nonetheless. Either way, he is a whole lot of fun to play with. Keep your scanners peeled for this one.


The Invisible Woman – Sue Richards – Marvel Legends (Walgreens Exclusive)

Sue Richards, Sue Storm, The Invisible Woman. Whatever you call her, the newest entry in the Walgreens exclusive figures from Marvel Legends is now a trend. First we had Namor, and now The Invisible Woman. The rest of the Fantastic 4 cannot be far behind.

Sue comes with H.E.R.B.I.E. While not an accessory people were dying for, it is a nice accessory none the less. We could very well have gotten Sue with nothing more than her alternate hand. It is nice that they threw something else in there for us. He will help all of the toy photographers her in the future as they build their Fantastic 4 sets.

Sue is well done. She is one of the newer body types that have melded form and function. Gone are the skinny limbs with the high-heeled boots. We get a much more usable pair of feet that not only look more realistic, but help the ladies stand on the shelf.

She has a fantastic head sculpt. She is beautiful. I am hoping this is the current trend, since we have now had a lot of really well done female heads recently that have been far and above some of the heads that have come out before.

I am really happy with this Sue, and I am looking forward to what is coming next with the Fantastic 4. Unlike the likes of Walmart, Walgreens seems serious about getting the figures out to the people. They may not be the fastest at getting the figures on the shelf, but they do get out there eventually. The reasons for me to go to Walgreens keeps growing. Marvel Legends, Transformers, and MiniMates. Keep it up Walgreens.


Katana – DC SuperHero Girls (2016 SDCC Exclusive)

It has been a while since I looked at a DC Superhero Girl. I was actually on the Mattel Toy Shop site at the end of last year since I heard they had She-Ra for a super good price. I saw that they had some Katanas left for an awesome price as well, so I pounced on the deal. I got her, took pictures, and then they sat in a folder on my desktop since January. It is June! Time to clean house I guess.

Well, the box art is what this set is all about. The fine people at Mattel did a fantastic job with some amazing art on all sides of the box.

Inside the outer box is a window-box that portrays Katana about to be attacked by some other bad girls.

Slide the box open and there you have the doll. She looks ready for action. She is clad in armor, holding her katana blade. Along with the katana is a bladed staff, 2 sai, a knife, and 4 throwing stars for good measure. That is a lot of accessories for a DCSG. Way more than any of the other girls get. That is to be expected in a SDCC exclusive set.

She has a stand with her name on it. The sheath of the sword attaches to the base to make a really nice display.

She is able to hold all of her weapons, except for the throwing stars. They are a bit on the small side for her grasping hands.

It was a nice touch to include sheaths for the weapons. She is able to wear the knife on her back.

There are a lot of parts that make up Katana. All of the armor comes off, leaving her in a grey/black suit. You can see that her arms are two different colors, so she is limited to wearing one outfit. Similar to Harley Quinn with painted legs.

This is a nice set. I do not like how she is looking off to the side. It makes it hard to pose her for photo shoots with the other girls. I saw she is still available on Amazon, but the price is back up to $90. Fear not, the standard version is out now, and is $21.99. Way better in price. I have not seen her in the wild yet. She was supposed to be coming out with Frost, who I have also not seen the wild. I will keep my eyes peeled for them.

Until then, there are lots of other great girls that have come out that we will be looking at shortly.


Blunderbuss and Broadside – Transformers: Titans Return (Voyager Class)

Broadside is a little hard to wrap my head around. He is Voyager Class, so he is the medium scale figure. He transforms from a robot, into an aircraft carrier, and then a jet. There are figures that can be out of size, but this guy is crazy. Because of the way he works with Blunderbuss, it seems that he is a tiny aircraft carrier, rather than a giant jet. Anyway, let’s take a look at the figure.

Broadside

Alpha Trion

He is a severely retooled Alpha Trion. The only thing they seem to share is that Broadside becomes an aircraft carrier, while Alpha Trion becomes a space aircraft carrier. You can see some similarities around the feet, but that is about it.

Broadside has wings that from the front look like they belong to a jet, but from the back, they look like they are a part of the aircraft carrier. There is a big cockpit hanging off his back, so there is not a lot of greeble hanging around this guy.

He comes with Blunderbuss. A fitting name for this sea-faring Titan Master, as a Blunderbuss was a gun known to be carried by navy and privateers. Too bad Broadside didn’t come with a Blunderbuss to run around with. It seems like they could have, since they gave Sergeant Kup a musket at one point. Blunderbuss is based off of Sovereign who came with Alpha Trion. I would think they would try to mix these guys up a bit more, but oh well.

Transforming Broadside is pretty straight forward. He becomes an aircraft carrier. Nothing too exciting going on there. He comes with little jets that resemble the Aerialbots. It is supposed to help sell the illusion that this guy is actually really big… though he isn’t.

There are a few choices of places for Blunderbuss to sit. One is sitting in the gun mounted on the side of the aircraft carrier. I still think it is a terrible idea for someone to stick their Titan Master out in the elements of the fight. No head, means no robot. Not a good idea.

The second place, is in place of the flight tower. The antenna fold down, and the top flips in half to make a seat. Still not the safest, but better than hanging off the side.

Then there is the third mode. A… jet? This is what happens when you start with someone like Alpha Trion. You have a robot, a space aircraft carrier, and a lion. You go and make Broadside, with a robot, an aircraft carrier, and a jet? There are a lot of differences between a lion and a jet. So you give him a cockpit. Done. Add some wings. Done. And then squish everything in the back together and add some fins and stabilizers to help the illusion. It looks more like a block with a pointed nose than a jet.

I am thinking maybe it is kinda Macross style with giant jets hanging off the back. Maybe a little Jetfire like. Okay, I am back on board with the space jet idea. Too bad the aircraft carrier wasn’t kept as a space aircraft carrier too.

Overall I like him. He has a good robot mode. From there it is a fine aircraft carrier. Too small for any good, but still nice. And the jet is okay. You have to squint at it, but I have seen worse. I don’t think he is going to end up being anyone’s favorite figure of the Titan’s Return line, but he is a solid figure, and some much needed Voyager Class muscle for the Autobot side.

 


Skywarp – Transformers: Robots in Disguise

A while back I took a look at Starscream . This time around it is Skywarp’s turn. I only mention Starscream because, like with nearly every other (if not every other) version of Skywarp we have ever gotten was a repaint (and new head) of Starscream.

I have always been a fan of the Seekers, so any time they come out in any form, I like to grab them up.

So far Skywarp and Starscream are the only two Seekers we have in the Robots in Disguise show. It would be great to get my main man, Thundercracker, but we will have to wait and see.

The robot mode of Skywarp is really good. Just like with Starscream, they have good articulation, and nice skinny bodies, as we would want to see. The plane parts fold up really nicely and out of the way. He comes with two blasters that can be mounted on the forearm, as they should always be able to do, but also be held in the hand as a pistol.

Transform him into robot mode, and he is a forward-swept wing jet. The style is really fun. I am a big fan of the really long noses these jets have. The arms and shoulders fold under the wing, giving it quite a fat look, but at least the body parts fit the angle of the wings so the robot parts aren’t so distracting.

The guns mount under the wing tips for a bit of bite in jet mode.

I really like this figure in the Robots in Disguise line. There are some hits and misses in the line, where it is clear corners were being cut with less transformation, or articulation. But that is not the case here. Skywarp is what we want to see in the RiD lineup.

I have a few more RiD figures to look at, and they are all really well done. I think Hasbro has done a great job on the back end of this toy line to give us some good characters with some very interesting transformations. Stay tuned…


Vance Astro – Marvel Legends – Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (Titus Wave)

Look everybody, it’s Vance Astro. Who? You know, Vance Astro. *chirp chirp* Yes that is right, the guy that not many people have heard about. But he is important because he was a founding member of the Guardians of the Galaxy back in 1969. And that is pretty cool. His story though is riddled with bummers.

Starting with his entering the space program. He was sent on a mission to the Alpha Centauri system that would take 10 centuries, since his ship was not equipped with a faster-than-light engine. By the time he made it to his destination, the planet had already been visited by humans, since the faster engines were developed over the centuries. Sad, right?

From there, he creates the Guardians of the Galaxy, and jumps all over time changing history, and teaming up with teams like The Defenders, and the Avengers. He even meets himself, and convinces himself not to join the space program. It makes me think of the movies and TV shows where someone tries to explain how the timeline is interrupted by a character doing something at some point. And how this version of the character is from the future that does not exist any more.

One of the times he has to go in search of Captain America’s shield. Well, he found it, and we got it as a part of this set.

Major Victory is given to us in his standard suit. Basically the best choice so Hasbro can use the standard tall, muscular body and just paint it. It is nothing special, and a figure most people would probably skip if not for the BAF part for Titus.

What he does have going for him is the sculpt is killer, with all of the good detailing in the muscle, and good articulation.

As I mentioned before, he comes with Captain America’s shield. And that is it. Paint and a shield. The shield is standard, so it can clip on the wrist, or the clip can be folded back to reveal a post that can go in Vance’s back.

I can not go so far as to say this guy is totally worth it. The price is down on Amazon, so that helps, but this is not best figure we have seen. He is important to the Guardians, so that ups his cool points, but not by much.

 


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